I wrote a pessimistic preview of the OKC-GSW game for our friendly enemies at the Daily Thunder: In my defense, I wrote it two weeks ago while the Warriors were in high stink mode. Also, I still think it is basically right:
What’s the biggest key to the Warriors winning the game, in your opinion?
Eric: Defense. The W’s formula vs Westbrook has always been to turn him into a one-man attacker and let his inefficient side shine. This requires disciplined defense, which has not been on offer from them this year. During the Finals runs, Golden State has had a top three defense, but not this year. Durant and Green set the tone and organize the D and they have been careless. The switching defense has been sloppy with mistakes and miscommunication, and GSW’s transition defense has been particularly sad, losing players for threes and open layups.
If the Warriors can turn Westbrook and George into isolation scorers, they can get some stops and run out to easier scores. The OKC defense has been very impressive in the halfcourt and has gummed up the Warriors’ motion attack.
Who wins, and why?
Eric: To win, GSW needs
- Defensive communication, energy and precision
- More transition scores
- KD or Curry to put active pressure on the defense
- Westbrook or George or Anthony to have a bad shooting game
Without all four, I think OKC wrestles GSW in the half-court game, Westbrook plays within himself, and OKC wins the battle of points off turnovers and offensive rebounds, winning by double-digits. This is assuming OKC brings the laser focus and energy of the previous two match-ups.
Well, we got the defensive energy and precision, more transition scores, KD and Curry being aggressive in each half, and all of the OK3 big guns having bad shooting nights. This resulted in a mammoth second half blowout.
At the end of the first half, the Warriors got some separation by running a basic play, scoring each time. Here’s a short video about this play. Watch GSW pummel Oklahoma City with the same play five times in a row: the triple split with Kevin Durant, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson. Stephen Curry and Andre Iguodala set the stage. From the Feb 24 2018 Thunder-Warriors game.
KD-Dray-Klay Triple Split
Watch the Golden State Warriors pummel Oklahoma City with the same play five times in a row: the triple split with Kevin Durant, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson. Stephen Curry and Andre Iguodala set the stage. By @EricApricot. Full stories and other videos at http://tinyurl.com/ericapricot.Posted by Golden State of Mind on Tuesday, February 27, 2018